Purpose of Review
To evaluate physiologic measures that can be used by emergency medical services to identify patients at high risk of serious injury and inform decisions about the level of trauma care needed.
- The identified measures are better at ruling in (high specificity) than ruling out (low sensitivity) serious injury and the need for critical resources.
- Systolic blood pressure, shock index, and lactate appear to have similar predictive utility for identifying seriously injured patients.
- Measures used for adults are useful for children and older people although some perform less well.
- Research is needed on how physiologic parameters are measured, including the use of technology; researchers should use standard definitions to permit comparisons across studies and measures.